Use carpet squares instead of standard carpet?
February 22, 2004 11:49 AM   Subscribe

Carpet squares. Have any DIY-types on MeFi used these instead of standard carpet? I'm stuck between the Scylla of finances and the Charybdis of an incredibly ugly hardwood floor (the previous owners were too frail to do anything about upkeep and the wood itself is damaged--not just the finish). The squares would allow me to leave the floor almost wholly intact, which would be a plus if I eventually decide to sell. And the total cost will be about half that of regular carpeting w/installation. But are they worth the investment? I've seen some brief positive responses, but that's it.
posted by thomas j wise to Home & Garden (10 answers total)
My folks use them, and I think that they're pleasant looking. If you take your time, the seams really are invisible. Plus, you can replace a square that gets soiled or damaged. Installation was easy enough that a couple in their fifties did it in a couple of days and didn't ask their able-bodied son to help out.

(Mom and Dad went with them because they have three dogs and five cats. Mom is very, very enthusiastic about her carpet tiles.)
posted by Mayor Curley at 12:37 PM on February 22, 2004

We installed these in an office where I used to work, but they were specific commercial grade tiles and used a special adhesive that allowed us to remove the tiles and rotate those in heavy traffic areas to minimise wear. They worked very well , but were around the same price as conventional laid carpet. Beware of el-cheapo carpet tiles, as they lift up at the corners unless you glue them down securely, negating the benefits of tiles in the first place.
posted by dg at 3:49 PM on February 22, 2004

This is a pleasant coincidence. I was just about to post a question about carpeting. Has anyone got any recommendations on either carpet squares or wall-to-wall for about 500-square feet of wooden floor? I'm just out of college so price is an issue, but I don't want to skimp on quality. How much can I expect to spend if I acquired the carpet myself and did the install? What about a professional install? What are the benefits of wall-to-wall versus carpet-tiles?
posted by Raze2k at 8:33 PM on February 22, 2004

A quick search on froogle suggests that I'd spend at least $1000 on 1'x1' carpet tiles. Is this less costly than wall-to-wall? I'm a bit wary of such small tiles lifting or shifting.
posted by Raze2k at 8:50 PM on February 22, 2004

I have recently installed the Legato System in my basement.

...are they worth the investment?

Long term, I can't say, short term, yes. I'd be glad to elaborate for any one who is interested, but not at this late hour.
posted by jaronson at 9:46 PM on February 22, 2004

You could probably do better with an area rug. While not wall-to-wall, your existing wood flooring could nicely frame one of these. If need be, you could also paint your wood floor, as this seems to hide a good deal of damage.

And you don't need to spend tons of money on an antique hand-made oriental rug. There are some very nice machine made room sized rugs available from either a local rug shop or chain retailer (like Macy's). No installation necessary, other than to unroll it.
posted by SteveInMaine at 6:37 AM on February 23, 2004

SteveInMaine's suggetion sounds like an economically wise option.

If buying a rug, don't forget to buy only RugMarked rugs. Guaranteed kiddie suffering free!
posted by asok at 6:46 AM on February 23, 2004

What ever happened to sanding down the hardwood, and putting on a modern polyurethane coating? You get lovely wood that is impermeable to most things, and less dust in your house.
posted by Goofyy at 7:45 AM on February 23, 2004

Response by poster: Goofyy: I looked into sanding & coating, but in order to do it I'd have to move 5000 books and 24 bookcases out of the house (not to mention myself and two cats--there are usually nasty fumes involved); carpeting wouldn't require such, er, drastic measures.

Steveinmaine: Thanks for the suggestion. I've been thinking about squares because my cats have managed to destroy every area rug I've ever had--but perhaps a more stain-resistant area rug would do the trick.
posted by thomas j wise at 8:57 AM on February 23, 2004

My wife is an architect and she ordered some sample squares through her work for free. We then took the squares with adhesive on the back and stuck them to those mats you use to keep your throw rugs from sliding around. Now we have some very inexpensive rugs. No one even guesses that she made them herself.
posted by trbrts at 6:29 PM on February 23, 2004

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